FYI June 23 & 24, 2019

On This Day

229 – Sun Quan proclaims himself emperor of Eastern Wu.
Sun Quan (About this soundpronunciation (help·info)) (5 July 182 – 21 May 252),[a][2] courtesy name Zhongmou, formally known as Emperor Da of Wu (literally “Great Emperor of Wu”), was the founder of the state of Eastern Wu during the Three Kingdoms period. He inherited control of the warlord regime established by his elder brother, Sun Ce, in 200. He declared formal independence and ruled from 222 to 229 as the King of Wu and from 229 to 252 as the Emperor of Wu. Unlike his rivals Cao Cao and Liu Bei, Sun Quan was much younger than they were and governed his state mostly separate of politics and ideology. He is sometimes portrayed as neutral considering he adopted a flexible foreign policy between his two rivals with the goal of pursuing the greatest interests for the country.

Sun Quan was born while his father Sun Jian served as the adjutant of Xiapi County. After Sun Jian’s death in the early 190s, he and his family lived at various cities on the lower Yangtze River, until Sun Ce carved out a warlord regime in the Jiangdong region, based on his own followers and a number of local clan allegiances. When Sun Ce was assassinated by the retainers of Xu Gong in 200, the 18-year-old Sun Quan inherited the lands southeast of the Yangtze River from his brother. His administration proved to be relatively stable in those early years as Sun Jian and Sun Ce’s most senior officers, such as Zhou Yu, Zhang Zhao, Zhang Hong, and Cheng Pu supported the succession. Thus throughout the 200s, Sun Quan, under the tutelage of his able advisers, continued to build up his strength along the Yangtze River. In early 207, his forces finally won complete victory over Huang Zu, a military leader under Liu Biao, who dominated the middle Yangtze.Huang Zu was killed in battle.

In winter of that year, the northern warlord Cao Cao led an army of approximately 220,000 to conquer the south to complete the reunification of China. Two distinct factions emerged at his court on how to handle the situation. One, led by Zhang Zhao, urged surrender whilst the other, led by Zhou Yu and Lu Su, opposed capitulation. Eventually, Sun Quan decided to oppose Cao Cao in the middle Yangtze with his superior riverine forces. Allied with Liu Bei and employing the combined strategies of Zhou Yu and Huang Gai, they defeated Cao Cao decisively at the Battle of Red Cliffs.

In 220, Cao Pi,King of Wei,Cao Cao’s son and successor, seized the throne and proclaimed himself to be the Emperor of China, ending and succeeding the nominal rule of the Han dynasty. At first Sun Quan nominally served as a Wei vassal with the Wei-created title of King of Wu, but after Cao Pi demanded that he send his son Sun Deng as a hostage to the Wei capital Luoyang and he refused, in 222, he declared himself independent by changing his era name. It was not until the year 229 that he formally declared himself emperor.

After the death of his original crown prince, Sun Deng, two opposing factions supporting different potential successors slowly emerged. When Sun He succeeded Sun Deng as the new crown prince, he was supported by Lu Xun and Zhuge Ke, while his rival Sun Ba was supported by Quan Cong and Bu Zhi and their clans. Over a prolonged internal power struggle, numerous officials were executed, and Sun Quan harshly settled the conflict between the two factions by exiling Sun He and forcing Sun Ba to commit suicide. Sun Quan died in 252 at the age of 70. He enjoyed the longest reign among all the founders of the Three Kingdoms and was succeeded by his son, Sun Liang.

The Records of the Three Kingdoms (Sanguozhi) describes Sun Quan as a tall man with bright eyes and oblong face. He was known as a wise and outgoing man who was fond of making jokes and playing tricks. Because of his skill in valuing the strength of his subordinates and avoiding their shortcomings, as well as treating them like his family, Sun Quan was able to delegate authority to capable figures. This primary strength served him well in gaining the support of the common people and surrounding himself with capable generals.


109 – Roman emperor Trajan inaugurates the Aqua Traiana, an aqueduct that channels water from Lake Bracciano, 40 kilometres (25 miles) north-west of Rome.
The Aqua Traiana (later rebuilt and named the Acqua Paola) was a 1st-century Roman aqueduct built by Emperor Trajan and inaugurated on 24 June 109 AD.[1] It channelled water from sources around Lake Bracciano, 40 kilometers (25 mi) north-west of Rome, to Rome in ancient Roman times but had fallen into disuse by the 17th century. It fed a number of water mills on the Janiculum, including a sophisticated mill complex revealed by excavations in the 1990s under the present American Academy in Rome. Some of the Janiculum mills were famously put out of action by the Ostrogoths when they cut the aqueduct in 537 during the first siege of Rome. Belisarius restored the supply of grain by using mills floating in the Tiber. The complex of mills bears parallels with a similar complex at Barbegal in southern Gaul.



Born On This Day

1889 – Verena Holmes, English engineer (d. 1964)
Verena Winifred Holmes (23 June 1889 – 20 February 1964)[1] was an English mechanical engineer and multi-field inventor, the first woman member elected to the Institution of Mechanical Engineers (1924), and a strong supporter of women in engineering. She was one of the early members of the Women’s Engineering Society, and its president in 1931.[2][3] She was the first practising engineer to serve as president of the society.[4]

Early life
She was born at Highworth, Ashford, Kent to Florence Mary Holmes and Edmond Gore Alexander Holmes. Having wanted to be an engineer since childhood, Holmes gained employment building wooden propellers at the Integral Propeller Company, Hendon, after graduation from Oxford High School for Girls. She took night classes at the Shoreditch Technical Institute and attended a technical college in Lincoln; she served as an apprentice form-fitter and drafter before graduation from Loughborough Engineering College in 1922 with a BSc(Eng) degree.[5]

Professional career
Her technical specialities included marine and locomotive engines, diesel and internal combustion engines. She became an associate member of the Institution of Marine Engineers in 1924 and was admitted to the Institution of Locomotive Engineers in 1931.[6]

She was employed by Research Engineers Ltd. from 1932–39, during which time she developed and patented many inventions, including the Holmes and Wingfield pneumo-thorax apparatus for treating patients with tuberculosis, a surgeon’s headlamp, a poppet valve for steam locomotives, and rotary valves for internal combustion engines. She held patents for 12 inventions for medical devices as well as engine components.[7]

During World War II she worked on naval weaponry and in 1940 became adviser to Ernest Bevin, the minister of labour, on the training of munition workers.[4] She was appointed headquarters technical officer with the Ministry of Labour (1940-1944). She was heavily involved in encouraging and supporting women in engineering. Together with Caroline Haslett and Claudia Parsons, she was a founding member of the Women’s Engineering Society in 1919. She served the society in several capacities, including president in 1930 and 1931.[7]

Support for women’s engineering

Her work in support of women in engineering was based partly upon her own experiences; although she had been admitted to the Institution of Mechanical Engineers as an associate member in 1924, it took twenty years for her to be admitted as a full member. She founded the engineering firm of Holmes and Leather in 1946, which employed only women. Using a design created by Holmes, this firm created the first practical safety guillotine for paper, making it suitable for introduction into schools.[7] In 1958, she published a booklet, Training and Opportunities for Women in Engineering.[6]

From 1969, the Women’s Engineering Society supported a yearly Verena Holmes lecture,[8] given at various venues across Britain to children aged nine to eleven to encourage interest in engineering, [9][10] although now the programme is closed. Verena Holmes’ birthday of 23 June coincides with International Women in Engineering Day and she is commemorated as part of that celebration.

1867 – Ruth Randall Edström, American educator and activist (d. 1944)
Ruth Miriam Edström (née Randall; June 24, 1867 – October 5, 1944) was an American peace activist and fighter for women’s rights. She worked with the pre-work for the third peace conference in The Hague (after the first conferences in 1899 and 1907).[1][2] She participated in the international women’s congress in 1915. Ruth was the wife of the head of Asea, J. Sigfrid Edström.[3]

Early life
Ruth Randall was the eldest of seven siblings in Wilmington, Illinois, the daughter of Oscar Theodore Randall and Jane Mariah (née Lewis) Randall. The family moved to Chicago in 1870 and settled in a suburb a few miles from the city center.[4]

The year after their move the great Chicago fire happened with 250 people dead and 95.000 people homeless, however the Randall’s house survived the fires but their shop did not make it and was burnt to the ground. The Randall family belong to the Reformed Church. One day when Ruth was sixteen years old her father brought her and her oldest siblings to a new chapel were Jenkin Lloyd Jones preached. The priest talked about Jesus and his message of love, justice and peace. Jones had like Oscar participated in the American Civil War and experienced the horrors of war.[4]

The Randalls started to attend service at the Unity Chapel that belonged to All Souls Unitarian Church. They participated as well in Jones religious and philosophical education. The students were educated in the Unitarian belief system and became friends with the author Ralph Waldo Emerson and Robert Browning and many others. The year of studies ended with a historical party with dramas of Charles Dickens and Charles Kingsley. The latter wrote the book Hypatia, the female philosopher and mathematician. Ruth suggested the play about Hypatia and got to select the actors and direct the play.[5]

Education and later life
Randall educated herself to be a teacher, worked for the Unitarian Church and got herself big cultural and esoterian interests. She got a job at Forestville School in Chicago. In the summer of 1896 the teachers of the school went on a trip to Europe, they traveled by the new atlantic steam boat Etruria. Onboard was also the Swedish engineer Sigfrid Edström en route to work for an electric company in Cleveland, Ohio.[3]

Randall and Edström wed on her 32nd birthday, June 24, 1899, at her home in Chicago. The honeymoon was in Bremen and Gothenburg. They resided in Switzerland were Sigfrid work for a tramway company in Zürich. His wife liked to live in their first own home in the city, but already after one year the couple moved to Sweden where Edström was named the head of Gothenburg’s tramway system.[citation needed]

In the summer of 1903, she, her husband and their two children, Miriam and Björn, moved to Västerås, where Sigfrid got to work for the stock company Asea.[4] The company grow and with it came money, the Randalls started building a house in Stallhagen, they named the house Villa Asea. When the house was ready in 1908 the couple made a big opening for friends and the city major.[4]

After her death in 1944 in Stockholm a memory fund for Ruth Randall Edström was created.[6][7]



Fox News: Rock n’ roll pioneer Dave Bartholomew dead at 100

David Louis Bartholomew (December 24, 1918 – June 23, 2019) was an American musician, bandleader, composer, arranger and record producer. He was prominent in the music of New Orleans throughout the second half of the 20th century. Originally a trumpeter, he was active in many musical genres, including rhythm and blues, big band, swing music, rock and roll, New Orleans jazz and Dixieland. In his induction into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, he was cited as a key figure in the transition from jump blues and swing to R&B and as “one of the Crescent City’s greatest musicians and a true pioneer in the rock and roll revolution.”[1]

Many musicians have recorded Bartholomew’s songs, but his partnership with Fats Domino produced some of his greatest successes. In the mid-1950s they wrote more than forty hits for Imperial Records, including the Billboard number one pop chart hit “Ain’t That a Shame”. Bartholomew’s other hit songs as a composer included “I Hear You Knocking”, “Blue Monday”, “I’m Walkin'”, “My Ding-A-Ling”, and “One Night”. He was a member of the Songwriters Hall of Fame, the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and the Louisiana Music Hall of Fame.[2]



By Leah Asmelash and Melissa Gray, CNN: Judith Krantz, romance novelist, dies at 91

Judith Krantz (née Tarcher; January 9, 1928 – June 22, 2019) was an American novelist who wrote in the romance genre. Her works included Scruples, Princess Daisy, and Till We Meet Again.


Fox News: Lettermen singer Jim Pike dead at 82

The Lettermen are an American male pop vocal trio. The Lettermen’s trademark is close-harmony pop songs with light arrangements. The group started in 1959. They have had two Top 10 singles (both #7), 16 Top 10 singles on the Adult Contemporary chart (including one #1), 32 consecutive Billboard chart albums, 11 gold records, and five Grammy nominations.

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Don’t get in a fight. Get away from the situation and be aware.


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